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Tourism in La Crosse aiming to return to banner year performance of 2019

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The La Crosse area tourism industry is getting ready for what could be the region’s best season since before the pandemic. 

A.J. Frels from the Explore La Crosse office traveled around the city on Tuesday with Governor Evers and state tourism secretary Anne Sayers, to mark National Travel and Tourism Week.     

Frels points out that La Crosse was among the top 10 Wisconsin counties for tourism revenue in 2019, bringing in $281 million.  He says leisure travel has been one of the strongest areas for local tourism, as people get back on the road.  

“Tourism is definitely back in the La Crosse region,” Frels tells reporters. “In 2021, we saw that visitors were back with a vengeance towards the last half of the year. Obviously, coming out of COVID through May, June, it was fairly slow, and then the last half of the year, it came back extremely strong.”

Frels says some months of last year saw more tourism spending in the region than in 2019. 

Governor Tony Evers visited La Crosse on Tuesday to promote tourism, riding the MTU trolley to Grandad Bluff and stopping at the Pearl Ice Cream shop.     

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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